Hudson, M. (2017) Wind beneath their contempt: Why Australian policymakers oppose solar and wind energy, Energy Research & Social Science, 28, pp. 11-16.


Renewable energy has met with hostility from policymakers. This is particularly true of Australia, which has ample wind and solar resources. Explanations of this hostility have so far focussed on material and ideological factors, especially policy capture by fossil-fuel interests. This article gives examples of discursive and policy hostility to renewables, before examining the material and ideological factors that partially explain policymakers’ hostility. It then discusses psychological and psychoanalytic perspectives, specifically Mannheim’s cohort effect and Becker’s ‘Terror Management Theory’ as additional explanations. Limitations of the study, and scope for further action and research opportunities are discussed.

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